As fellow group members will be arriving throughout the day there are no planned activities until the group meeting in the evening at 6:00pm, followed by an optional group dinner. Upon arrival please check the notice board in the hotel reception for details of the time and place of the meeting.
The Chinese capital, Beijing, is one of the world's most impressive and vibrant cities. Spend a day at the Great Wall, a monumental feat of engineering intended to protect China from the northern barbarians. Be sure to check out Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City in your free time. You also have the option to visit the Temple of Heaven, the Summer Palace, Yonghegong Tibetan Monastery and some of Beijing’s many markets. We take an overnight train to Xi'an on Day 3.
Our CEO will take you on an orientation walk through one of Xi’an’s most fascinating areas—the Muslim Quarter. Tour the lovely and unusual Great Mosque (a wonderfully serene place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city), great souvenir stalls and enjoy some of the best street food in China. The remaining city walls are a great place to watch the sunset or join the locals for ballroom dancing or tai chi in the early morning. Opt to take a day trip to the Terracotta Warriors, situated a short drive out of town (approximately 1 hour). The warriors were re-discovered in 1974, having been buried for over 2000 years. All face east in battle formation, complete with horses and chariots to guard the tomb of the emperor Shi Huang Di. In the evening of Day 5, we board an overnight sleeper train that will ease us into Suzhou early the following morning. (Approx. 12 hrs.)
While Shanghai is the modern center of the Yangtse delta, Suzhou was the capital of Wu culture 800 years ago and is one of China's leading historical cities. Developing around the Grand Canal that forged much of China's traditional north-south commerce, Suzhou is built around a series of canals inspiring Chinese to consider it the "Venice of the East". Now a modern thriving city Suzhou maintains a traditional core surrounded by a moat and is world famous as a UNESCO world heritage site for its traditional Chinese gardens. Opt to visit one of China's most exquisite gardens, Master of the Nets, and take in a traditional Chinese performance, complete with ancient costumes, folk singing and dancing, and traditional instruments. The Garden of Master of the Nets includes both a residential quarter and a delicately landscaped garden, both of which are illuminated at night by lanterns.
Arrive in Shanghai and enjoy an orientation walk to help you get your bearings. In the evening, let loose like the locals with a karaoke session in a private room for the group. This will definitely be a night to remember! Shanghai is the most modern of Chinese cities. Go shopping on the famous Nanjing Road or stroll along the Bund district, with its many riverside historical buildings.
Depart at any time.